Thursday, February 04, 2016

February is for Finishing: Taking stock

As you have likely noticed, I've finished a whole whack of neglected projects in the past few days. February is for Finishing is a fine tradition here at House of M and something I've done with my two dearest friends, Bekah and Koren, for some years. Usually, it's knitted things, but this year, I wanted to look very honestly at all my soft arts projects and see if I couldn't get some things out of my sizable pile of projects in progress.

The first thing to do is to tidy up.

To the left and below are what my crafting areas looked like a couple of weeks ago. I don't generally like to show my messes, but these are the result of rampant creativity.
I have lots of ideas, lots of inspiration, and it all just kind of physically accumulates in these two spots.

Before February began, I made a concerted effort, not only to clean up, but to list every project in these piles so that I know what, exactly, I have going on.
I found my end table.

I've also discovered that I can actually put my coffee there and I can put my computer there when I want to use my sewing machine (off camera to the right is my desk where both computer and sewing machine sit).

My other desk is a fold-up number, which is super handy for a small space, but not when it's so full of stuff that you can't actually fold it up. 

Once that was done, I had a complete list of every project I'd started or gathered the materials for and ended up with thirty-one. The greater majority of those are only in the planning stage, but I'd gotten as far as collecting the materials for the job. One or two were only in the idea stage. 

Four, as you've likely seen, have been finished since the beginning of the month and two pairs of socks have been frogged to reclaim the needles and to start again at a later date. That leaves me with twenty-five total projects on the pile, approximately half of which are in progress. Following the tradition of the Annual Airing of the WiPs, they are as follows:
  1. A 9-patch pastel quilt that has several blocks sewn, but not enough. 
  2. Stjarna, by Karolina Eckerdal. My goal is an even dozen stars for purposes of Yule ornaments and I have two finished.
  3. Laurelhurst by NW Foraged. This is the second hat in this pattern that I've made, the first was for 25000 tuques and this one is for me. I'm just to the bottom of the color work pattern.
  4. The art jeans. You've seen me work on these off and on. I don't expect to finish any time soon. 
  5. Ballet Bear's steeked cardi. This is an experiment that is no skin off my nose if it fails. It might take a couple of days to finish. I haven't steeked before and a tiny cardigan for a bear seems like the way to go for experimentation. It isn't wool, though, and may be doomed to failure.
  6. Crocheted Bed Scarf, inspired by the architecture of Chicago. I've done a goodly stack of blocks, but have a fair amount of yarn that I want to put into still yet to go. I might make some progress this month, but don't plan to finish.
  7. TARDIS bag, which is a lot of fiddly stitching, but will probably look awesome if I ever finish it. I probably won't get to it this month.
  8. Blackwork Bird Pillow that I started last month during the Month of Mending. I'm well into the snowflake border and the center is sketched out
  9. Two small blackwork samplers, which were started at the same time as the pillow. One is nearly done, the other sketched out.
  10. White silk spinning. All but about an ounce has been spun up into singles. This has a high likelihood of getting finished since I like to spin a little just before bed if I have time.
That's not too bad of a list, really, and some of that is certainly to be worked on this month. I may even finish a couple of those things, but there is one final project that will be the focus of my efforts:

11. Iris' quilt. "I'll finish before she goes to college" is less funny when the child in question is in high school. As it stands, I have 16/81 blocks quilted, which works out to about 20%. 

It was deeply satisfying to knock off several FOs early in the month, but now that I've started back on this behemoth, that's going to slow down considerably. It's harder to take this one to work on during dance class, though, so several of the smaller projects have hope of getting finished before the month is out.

Good luck in your finishing endeavors this month, my fellow makers. By next week, I hope to have whittled down the list of WiPs even more and I'll share some pictoral updates on my progress. 
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